SPRI’s third annual Vail Scientific Summit kicked off on Wednesday night at the Vail Marriott Mountain Resort and Dr. Johnny Huard, the event’s founder two years ago and the chair of this week’s conference, sounded like the proudest parent at a school awards convocation.
“When I arrived here in Vail two summers ago,” recalled Huard as he reflected on the humble beginnings of the Vail Scientific Summit, “our great benefactor and friend Mike Shannon suggested to me that we start our own conference each year right here in Vail. I thought it was a great idea and told Mike that I would put that on my agenda for 2016. But Mike had other ideas. He told me he wanted one in three weeks!” laughed Huard. “And he wasn’t kidding. He was very confident that we could pull it off.”
And pull it off they did. It happened, as Huard said because of a word that SPRI’s Chief Scientific Officer likely says in his sleep each night – collaboration.
“I called several of my colleagues from around the country and many of them jumped in head first and helped us put on a really nice Summit, but we knew there was a lot of room to grow.”
And grow is exactly what it has done. Wednesday’s welcome reception and dinner, followed by an opening keynote speech from Dr. James Kirkland, a renowned aging expert from the Mayo Clinic, christened the 2017 Summit that will feature over 60 speakers – from the diverse fields of regenerative medicine, aging, biomechanics and orthopaedic surgery – all the way through Saturday afternoon.
Event co-chair Dr. Marc Philippon, the Managing Partner of The Steadman Clinic and co-chair of SPRI, welcomed the crowd at Wednesday’s dinner.
“We have gathered a strong and diverse group here and we all have the same goal in mind -- we want to help our patients,” said Philippon. “Through the great work shared by the people in this group, we are at the first step in conquering that great mountain of discovering new ways to help our patients live longer and more active lives.”
Dr. Peter Millett also serves as a co-chair of the Summit and he too offered some welcoming remarks.
“It really means a lot to us to have you all here to share your information with us,” said Millett. “The collaboration is the foundation that The Steadman Clinic and the Steadman-Philippon Research Institute have been built upon. For me, as an orthopaedic surgeon who treats patients daily, this is really helpful. I get to think about new ideas, test new hypotheses and develop new relationships with our colleagues from different disciplines. This week will help all of us give our patients the very best treatment every day.”